The African Union (AU), through the African Governance Architecture (AGA) Secretariat, in collaboration with the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) have launched the African Union Democracy and Governance in Africa – Youth Innovation Challenge 2020. The African Union (AU) is using this medium to invite Youth innovators, incubation centres and innovation hubs across Africa to participate in the Youth Innovation Challenge.
About the African Union Democracy and Governance in Africa – Youth Innovation Challenge 2020
In recognition of the importance and value that young people bring to Africa’s development and democratization process, the African Union (AU) has set the roles played by youth as one of its priorities by identifying youth as leaders, partners, and beneficiaries. This initiative is focused on identifying and recognizing existing youth-focused and/or youth-led innovations to ultimately amplify the voices of young people in contribution to peace.
African Union Democracy and Governance in Africa – The Youth Innovation Challenge calls for existing innovations that are influencing or making an impact on the structural prevention of conflict through addressing and tackling issues of deficit in democracy, lack of good governance, as well as contributing to the promotion and protection of human rights.
The African Union Democracy and Governance in Africa – Youth Innovation Challenge 2020 comes with benefits for the selected youth innovators. These benefits are as follows;
- 20 applicants will be selected and will receive an opportunity for accelerator training to help develop their Innovations further for scale-up, expansion and greater impact. Established trainers and experts will be supporting the innovations or ideas to improve, refine and transform them into initiatives that will be magnified or replicated.
- The selection panel will also screen and shortlist final innovations based on the ideas developed during the accelerator training in order to select final innovation(s) to be awarded. These selected innovations (s) will have a number of opportunities to be acknowledged namely or recognized on the African Union Commission’s initiatives on the theme of the year; AGA Annual dialogues and others.
Certain eligibility criteria have to be met by African innovators, innovation hubs or labs, incubation centres and organizations with a non-profit or for-profit background in order to apply for the Youth Innovation Challenge. They can apply based on the following:
- The innovation should focus on Youth or innovation should be led by a young person between the age of 18 to 35
- Innovators, Innovations and innovation hubs should be based in Africa; African diaspora is open to apply. However, innovation in focus should be based in Africa.
- Applications should be based on an existing innovation (digital or non-digital) on or contributing to the following thematic areas such as: Enhancing good governance, Promoting and protection of human rights, justice and rule of law, Promoting democracy, Supporting public service, Creating social cohesion, Citizen participation and other important thematic areas that contribute to the African Union (AU) theme of the year – Silencing the Guns.
- The innovation should have been implemented or tested to a level of success/ impact and at the same time have to room for improvement, replication or scale-up at the national, regional or continental level
It should be noted that Innovation must reflect the mainstreaming of women and gender equality and as such female innovators are highly encouraged to apply.
Applications for the African Union Democracy and Governance in Africa – Youth Innovation Challenge 2020 can be submitted by completing the Application Form on the official online platform. Proceed to complete the form by filling in all the sections and email the necessary attachment(s) to this email address: Azzoozh@africa-union.org. Once submitted, the application process is final. Applicants will receive a notification email to acknowledge receipt of their application. Note that no handwritten applications will be accepted.
The challenge is an open call for youth as applications are open and are being accepted until the deadline date scheduled for 28th of July, 2020.
Follow this link for more details about the programme.